OWN is all about female empowerment so its latest show, “Marry Me Now,” fits the mold by flipping the script on how marriage proposals are done.
Instead of the man going down on one knee at a restaurant or an iconic romantic spot, the woman will surprise the man and do it instead. And Atlanta host/coach Rebecca Lynn Pope presides over this social experiment that in some cases works and in some cases blows up in classic reality show fashion.
“Marry Me Now” debuts at 9 p.m. Saturday, March 19, and will be available on Discovery+ on demand on the same day. (This show should not to be mistaken for the recent romcom “Marry Me” on Peacock starring Jennifer Lopez and Owen Wilson.)
Pope, who graduated the University of Washington in 1997, has been life coaching for the past decade. On her LinkedIn page, she describes herself as a “heart healer and spiritual advisor.”
In 2017, she did a vision board hoping for a show on OWN.
“When they approached me, I had no idea it was an OWN show,” Pope said in an interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “When they described the host for the show, it sounded just like me. I can show up and be myself.”
The production team found eight Houston area couples who have been together anywhere from under a year to seven years. The women range from the mid-20s to mid-30s. The men were misled in terms of what type of reality show this was so they would be surprised. For instance, if she were a realtor, they would make it seem like a show about real estate.
Naturally, Pope said, the reactions from the men are all over the map. “Some men are absolutely in love and are over the moon,” she said. “Then there are those men who think this is totally out of order and think this is not the way it should work. Some men are simply afraid of marriage and commitment.”
Pope in her private practice focuses on single women of color trying to understand how to date and know themselves better, she said. “I navigate them through relationships and dating so they can be in a place where they can be with someone they truly love,” she said.
She also knows not every woman or man wants to get married in 2022. But they still want healthy relationships. “People don’t want to be alone,” she said.
She also helps others become certified life coaches, saying she has helped at least 250 women worldwide. The pandemic, she said, has boosted demand for life coaches and therapists across the board.
The topics she addresses on YouTube include how to build confidence and self-esteem and asking for what you want and need. “Just a lot of little things that young people struggle with,” she said.
She herself married young and has three grown sons with a grandbaby on the way. She is on her second marriage, which has lasted seven years, with fellow life coach Kerry A. Pope.
“Marry Me Now”
9 p.m. Saturdays on OWN starting March 19. Also available the next day on Discovery+.
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